B2B marketing is no walk in the park. According to Garter, 77% of all B2B buyers think buying online is time-consuming and something they wish could be a whole lot easier. This makes it vital for your B2B marketing strategies to be current and, above all else, effective.
We’ll keep this introduction short and sweet. Here are 6 marketing strategies to B2B businesses in 2019.
Understand The Buyer’s Journey
The internet has changed the way people do business. Previously, it was very sales-focused; you had to go to trade shows, cold call potential clients and arrange face-to-face meetings to convince buyers you are the right business for the job.
With the exception of cold calling, which can still be valuable in some instances, this method of marketing is now outdated. CMO reported that 90% of B2B buyers now repeat at least one task in the traditional buyer’s journey.
The modern buyer’s journey is built on customer experience. Most buying decisions are made based on how you satisfy them directly or indirectly, rather than how much your product or service costs.
If you can create a digital experience that gives value to your customers at every step of the buyer’s journey, they will become loyal to your brand.
Create A Great B2B Website
Your B2B website is the most powerful B2B marketing technique at your disposal. If it is not up to scratch, you are losing out on a lot of leads, harming your conversion rates and ultimately damaging your rankings in search engines.
Buyers are expecting your website to help them solve their problems. As the digital age advances, the demand for value within the website will increase further still.
There are a few key criteria that your website must meet in order to satisfy B2B customers.
Firstly, it must be fast. If it’s not, visitors will quickly leave and find a competitor that can get them the information. It must also secure your data. If your website is not SSL encrypted, it’s deemed unsafe in the mind of the buyer. Finally, ensure that it is easy to navigate so users can access the content.
You must also bear in mind that a lot of business is now being done on-the-go; so much so that 40% of revenue in leading B2B organizations is done on mobile. This means that your website must function just as well on mobile devices as it does on desktops and laptops.
Improve Your Branding
This next B2B marketing strategy focuses on improving your branding. B2B businesses often don’t pay attention to their branding as much as B2C businesses. While they will tend to have the basics like logos, color schemes and slogans, they fail to go a step further and make real noise in the industry.
According to Blink Bits, 2019 is the year that B2B marketing businesses will start creating like brand purpose and brand promise to create a clearer understanding of the businesses vision. Furthermore, it goes on to say that B2B marketing businesses will create more sophisticated branding, including visual identity, signage and office design.
While this means that your budget for branding may increase, it should not be a reason to ignore it. Don’t risk falling behind your competitors and pay more attention to your B2B branding.
According to Monetize, 88% of all B2B buyers use the internet as part of their researching processes. This makes it essential that all your pages, including the homepage, services pages and other content are all created with search engine optimisation (SEO) in mind. SEO is a key strategy for attracting new leads.
Now, you may be thinking that you’re utilizing SEO already by stuffing your content and web pages with keywords. That’s not what Google is looking for anymore. In fact, keyword stuffing may not actually harm your rankings. Google’s algorithms are now smart enough to know what a web page is about without using your brand’s keywords in every other sentence or paragraph.
This isn’t to say that keywords aren’t important (because they are!) but rather that these techniques are outdated.
Google wants to put valuable content in front of those that are actively searching for it. This means that your SEO should focus around curating relevant content that is readable and actionable. Integrate long tail keywords into your content as this is what searched for the most.
If they’re using long tail keywords, chances are they are close to making a purchase so ensure your pages are optimized to bring them in.
Curate Valuable Content
While this is further down the list than you may have thought, it remains just as important. You may have noticed that some of these other B2B marketing strategies are based around it. Nevertheless, curating valuable content is a sure fire way to increase leads and boost your bottom line.
Digital Authority Partners claims that 90% of the most successful B2B content marketers prioritize their audience’s informational needs over their sales and promotional message. In other words, the content is focused on the customer.
It’s important to have the sales team involved with the content curation.
B2B marketing strategies should include sections within the content regardless of where they are down the sales funnel. For example, for visitors that are new to the subject, you should be creating blog posts and infographics to ease them down the funnel so they can decide if you really are someone that can help fulfil their needs.
Use Social Media
This final B2B marketing technique involves using social media to see what your audience is talking about. By understanding what potential customers are looking for, you can join the conversation and point them in the right direction.
Ideally, you should show them your content to help them but if you don’t, that’s not what this is about. Social media is used to present you and your business as an authoritative figure in your industry.
Not only will this increase the number of followers but your reputation within the field will be boosted dramatically if you can provide a value to the customer.
Social media is also great for referrals. If you include social buttons in your content for sharing on social media, visitors can share it with decision makers within an organisation, again convincing them you are a market leader.
These 6 strategies will unstick you from the web that is B2B marketing. Know what your buyers are looking for, give them great content on a well-branded, optimized website and keep them satisfied.